Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Girls Who Write Boys

Hey all,

It's time for another guest blogger. Today I have the honor of introducing Bryn Colvin. Bryn and I "met" way back in the beginning of my career and we've stayed professional friends and colleagues the whole time. Check out the interesting bio on her web site.

Please allow me to introduce myself. This site has quite a mix of stuff on it, for the simple reason that I do a lot of different things. I am an author, druid, and folk enthusiast, as my pages reflect. I write fantasy, comic scripts, mumming plays, poetry, erotica, reviews, essays and just about anything else that occurs to me. I use Bryn Colvin on my purely erotic fiction, and Brynneth N Colvin on everything else, although with some of the fantasy novels the distinctions aren't so clear.

I was born in Gloucestershire in 1977 and grew up not far from the River Severn, in Dursley - the place JK Rowling named the horrible Dursley family for. I learned music, read folklore, fell in love with the landscape, and discovered that I'm an unconventional soul deeply driven to follow my own path.

As you can see, Bryn is an interesting person to get to know. So let's see what's on her mind, shall we? Join me in welcoming, Bryn/Brynneth Colvin...

The first time I encountered m/m and yaoi fiction I was bemused by the idea. (Ok, it was a long time ago, I was younger, less informed, less kinky, less... you get the idea). Women, writing for women, about gay men. I had no idea how that was supposed to work. Fairly new to erotica, I was sticking to what I knew – mostly straight with occasional forays into f/f and light on kink. Back then most of my work was written from a female perspective.

Over the years since then, I’ve done a lot of reading, and writing, and listening to others. The appeal of m/m is one I really understand now. There’s a number of attractions. As a female reader, gay blokes are about as exotic as it gets. They can do things to each other that I will never be able to do, feel things I cannot imagine. That’s fascinating. They can be as rough as they like, and I do not need to feel threatened. They can be convincingly male, or chicks with dicks, or somewhere in between and however it works, it’s a different perspective on humanity and sexual possibility.

As a writer, the appeals are different. ‘Write what you know’ gets tedious after a while. Unless your existence is seriously wild, then the scope for plundering personal experience is limited. I got bored writing about me a long time ago. These days, I’m more interested in research, observation, getting into other people’s heads and trying to create plausible characters who are not me at all. And again, gay blokes are about as exotic as it gets, and I love a challenge.

There remains the niggling question of whether we are exploiting gay men, or the idea of gay men by doing this. Enough women dislike the way guys go for lesbian material after all. A female writer cannot know what it is like to be a gay man. However, all authors spend a lot of time writing what we don’t know first hand. No one expects mystery authors to kill anyone. You can write history without having lived it. In all other cases, what matters most is the research.

One of the best ways into writing m/m is, I think, to read the kinds of erotica gay guys write. There’s all kinds of interesting technical details you can pick up. Many male authors of the genre tend to be more direct than the women, and less angsty about the sex. Don’t imagine that guys have to be tough, macho, unemotional, unexpressive... men are complex people too, and they come in all kinds of shapes and mindsets.

The only way to avoid exploiting and disrespecting gay men, is by doing your homework. Make sure you know what you’re talking about. Read. Listen. Learn. Go further if you dare.

These days I’m as likely to write from a male perspective as a female one, regardless of whether the story is m/m or m/f. I’m increasingly inclined to feel that people are people, all utterly different from each other, and all very much alike, and in that paradox lies the attraction that keeps me reading, and writing, and trying to understand. I want to learn more about what it is to be human.

If you want to explore my m/m fiction, it’s at along with the work of a number of excellent and diverse authors of the genre – M King, Nix Winter, Max Griffin, Jon Michaelsen, Jaime Samms, Sarah Masters, Ryan Field, Alex Morgan and more.


As someone else who dabbles in m/m romance, this is one of the genres that also interests me. I like certain gay stories more than others, but like my m/f books, it has to be emotional, real and always have that true love conquers all ending.

Thanks, Bryn for sharing your view with us. If you want to learn more about Bryn/Brynneth please visit her WEBSITE. And let her know what you think in the comments below.

I'll be back on Friday with a pre-set blog about Beijing and what we are doing there. If we have internet, I'll try and give you one in person! WooHoo!!!

Hugs to all!

CJ England
Follow Your Dreams

1 comment:

Phylis said...

Hi Bryn! Great Blog!